For this holiday season, I decided to research pencil-thin artificial Christmas trees to possibly get for my apartment.

So if you’re wondering how to decorate a skinny Christmas tree, I now have had experience in doing so.

Some of us live in smaller homes and just don’t have room for a full-sized Christmas tree. In the past, I’ve typically decorated with tabletop artificial Christmas trees.

I can’t have a real tree due to asthma and other allergies.

A skinny Christmas tree was just what I needed in my one bedroom apartment

But this year I wanted to do something a bit different. I did decide to purchase a pencil (I just call it skinny) Christmas tree at Michael’s. It was $69.99, which was half-price.

The shatterproof ornaments I purchased were half off as well. Two containers with 50 tree ornaments were $14.99 each. So my Christmas tree and ornaments cost a total of $100.

So my purchases were a great choice in terms of money. I was pleased that I hadn’t had to spend more money to decorate my home for Christmas.

I took my cart outside and began loading my boxes into my SUV.

In decorating a skinny Christmas tree, leave the lights on so you can see how things will look with the ornaments

Reasons To Buy A Skinny Christmas Tree:

  • Pencil trees are typically cheaper than the wider versions
  • They really look nice in corners
  • Slim trees fit well in small spaces, such as an apartment
  • Compact trees are easier to store


If you have enough room in your home, you could place two or three slim Christmas trees together in an entryway and just leave them bare except for the lights. That would be an elegant look.

Slim artificial trees would also look great in a basket for a boho-style look.

Decorating The Tree:

If you have pets, when decorating your tree you might want to tie the ornaments on instead of just hanging

At first, I’d thought to place the tree in my living room. But my dining space is just a continuation of the living room. I ended up placing it in the corner of the dining space in front of the French doors.

When I first began to decorate this tree, I was a little hesitant about how or where to begin because I’d never decorated a pencil-thin tree before. 

I was pleased with the tree height, as it left enough room between it and the ceiling, and the tree shape was pleasing. 

Then I started working with the foliage, spacing out the branches and lights.

I started tying ornaments onto the branches with jute, which I do every year. This is to keep my curious pets from pulling the Christmas tree decorations off the branches.

I put quite a few at the top, then sat down and looked at it awhile. Then, as I sometimes do when I’m uncertain, I slept on it.

The next morning I decided that how I’d been decorating it just wasn’t working for me and started thinning out the ornaments.

That led to a much better and more understated look. (Sometimes it really helps to sleep on a decision.)

In decorating a skinny Christmas tree, alternate smaller and bigger ornaments

Choose A Few Colors For A More Unified Theme:

Choose a color theme for your tree. If you live in a small space you probably don’t want to overwhelm the room with a lot of colors.

I chose red, white, gold, and silver as my color theme.

At first, I thought about not putting anything on the tree. It was pretty with just the sprinkling of lights. But then I decided I wanted to add ornaments.

Adding The Ornaments:

I mixed in a variety of smaller ornaments I already had to make the tree more balanced at the top. Then I added in larger ornaments.

While at Michael’s I looked at three sizes of shatterproof ornaments. They were small, medium, and large. I chose medium.

I layered the ornaments at the top of the tree and then moved them down in layers toward the bottom.

I like the double image of lights mirrored in the French doors. And that you can view the tree from the outside patio.

I have lots of Christmas pins on Pinterest if you want to see more rooms decorated for the holiday season.

Below are some of the pins of thin trees I found for you to see.

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  1. I LOVE my skinny tree. My 3 1/2 yr old grandson was so excited to help decorate. Thus, the bottom half of the tree has 9,000 ornaments, the top-not so many. I do not care. I just noticed one side has no ornaments. I still do not care. We had fun, that’s all that matters. Yours is beautiful Brenda-so is mine…so is min

  2. I love it. I got so tired of decorating I just put garland on our small tree. Will probably go to World Market this week and get 1 more!!

  3. As always, you decorating is sweet perfection. I love your skinny tree in the corner. I had a skinny tree for years that I lit with the old-fashion candlestick lights. Finally, had to retire it – bought it in the late 70’s. Thank you Brenda for allowing us to see your “pin” pages on Christmas trees, etc. I enjoyed so much scrolling through each one. Christmas will be different for me this year, I lost my husband the 25 of October due to leukemia. We had been married for 59 years. It happened so fast that I am still running on adrenaline. Been following your blog since you were in Texas!

    1. I’m so very sorry about the loss of your husband. You were together a very long time. Yes, you are still running on adrenaline. When your brain can handle it, you will begin the stages of grief. I’ve written a lot about that. Thanks for being a long time follower!

  4. Your tree is some of the other posts above…glad you are not finished…more good stuff to come..staying tuned…lol I am not finished either and did not leave my sofa Cheers to a Merry Christmas Season.

  5. Beautiful tree! With the new fireplace and a dear little dog and silly lovable cat you certainly have created a “Cozy Little House.”

  6. I love live trees. Being from a farm family and living on a farm, it is a way to support farmers in this area of western North Carolina. When my children were little we went to a tree farm a picked out one to cut. Now we go to the farmers market and buy from the same farmer who greets like family. They are never perfect and sometimes fall down. They may have a “hole” on one side but I love their impefections. I also love that a live tree cleans they air while they are growing and no oil is used in their production. I recycle my tree by putting it in the pond for the fish or creating a winter habitat for small critters. I often look at permanent trees and think how I could have mine up and decorated by now, but I will wait to have the perfectly imperfect tree.

  7. Beautiful! I ordered a skinny/pencil tree as well and am waiting for its arrival. Like you, I’m short on space. Your tree is beautiful!

  8. I went to Michaels this past Saturday and all Christmas decor was 50% off. I say that’s a good deal. We have been empty nesters for 20 years and that is when we stopped putting up a big tree. We just put up a small table top tree on our breakfast nook table.

    I was looking at your tree from last year . I thought that was so pretty a white tree with all red ornaments.

  9. I was hoping to see a Boho Christmas tree. My friends and I were looking forward to seeing it done well and be inspired to try it too.

    1. Yes, I thought about that. But I would either have had to make the decorations myself or buy them. And they were terribly expensive because it’s so trendy. So I opted for plain ornaments because it’s boho all around it anyway.

  10. Oh it’s absolutely delightful. You just have such a back. I have a ton of ornaments but we have started with two trees a few years back. My daughter puts them up and decorates one and I do the other. This is the kid that never helped me decorate! I am so loving her enthusiasm. I am glad to see skinny trees have come back as i hadn’t seen many of them for a few years.

  11. This is my first year for an artificial tree and I hate it but due to health and financial problems it was the best route. I didn’t want any but my daughter in law said you have to have a tree , I’m like nope . Would rather do without , they bought it and will decorate it. I know I’m being Scrooge , to me I need a live tree. Your tree looks lovely and will go by your suggestions as you have such good taste. Thanks for sharing.

  12. I think your tree is beautifully decorated and fits perfectly into your space. You have a great gift for decorating and putting things together. I like to put a lot of ornaments on my tree too, the more the better. I only rarely have gone for a more (to me) minimalist approach! I absolutely need to have the lights turned on in order to place my ornaments properly to fill in blank spots, “holes,” etc. I also build from inside and work toward the outer-most layer. Because I put my tree in the front window with the curtains opened enough for the tree to be viewed from the street, daylight comes through and shows where all the “holes” are, and of course any tree is probably going to have holes, whether artificial or real. I use that daylight to help me fill the insides of the trees with older maybe in not such prime condition ornaments anymore. I am very sentimental and hate to toss ornaments that have “blackish” spots on them or crackling in the finish. Sometimes things should not have an “expires by” date on them. They still look beautiful planted deep inside the tree to fill in blank spots, especially when the lights are on. Just because one is older and a little worn doesn’t mean it has lost it’s sparkle, heh heh! Lots of white lights and tons of ornaments, I go over the top and love it! I hadn’t thought of a skinny tree; I bought a shorter Christmas tree this year – 5 1/2 feet tall instead of the 6 1/2 foot tree I had for many years. It wore itself out but I have lots of photos of how beautifully it served me over the years. Now, a new shorter version (which I’ll put up on a bit of a box to give it more height so it can be appreciated in the picture window) that will be easier to decorate and (being smaller, lighter and less bulky) move down and up the stairs from the basement storage area!

  13. I have a skinny tree too! I live in a small log home and I’m limited on space. I had a table top tree for years, but when my daughter came to live with me she wanted a larger tree so that’s when we purchased the skinny tree ! I love it I was always in a hurry to take the decorations down after Christmas but I love the way the tree looks and actually hate to take it down !

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